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Phil Manzanera

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Phil Manzanera 6pm album cover
4.00 | 13 ratings | 4 reviews | 23% 5 stars

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Studio Album, released in 2004

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Broken dreams (5:10)
2. Green spikey cactus (5:07)
3. Love devotion (5:39)
4. Wish you well (5:35)
5. 6pm (3:36)
6. Manzra (4:28)
7. Waiting for the sun to shine (5:11)
8. Cissbury ring (4:28)
9. Porlock (1:21)
10. Shoreline (1:42)
11. Always you (3:25)
12. Sacred days (3:59)

Total time : 49:45

Lyrics

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Music tabs (tablatures)

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Line-up / Musicians

- Phil Manzanera : guitar, vocals, keyboards, piano, drum programming
- Jamie Johnson : bass
- Paul Thompson : drums
- Chrissie Hynde : harmonica, backing vocals
- Claire Singers : backing vocals
- Brendan Jury : electric viola
- Yaron Stavi : double bass
- Robert Wyatt : drums, trumpet, vocals, keyboards
- Brian Eno : enotonic
- Nigel Simpson : piano
- Andy MacKay : sax, oboe
- Brendan Jury : viola
- David Gilmour : guitars
- Bill MacCormick : bass

Releases information

Expression Records Ltd. Manufactured and marketed by Rykodisc Ltd. Under exclusive license from Expression Records

Thanks to fishy for the addition
and to snobb for the last updates
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Hannibal 2005
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PHIL MANZANERA 6pm ratings distribution


4.00
(13 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of rock music(23%)
23%
Excellent addition to any rock music collection(54%)
54%
Good, but non-essential (23%)
23%
Collectors/fans only (0%)
0%
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)
0%

PHIL MANZANERA 6pm reviews


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Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Joolz
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Phil Manzanera, who made a name as guitarist in Roxy Music in the 70s, has released a steady flow of solo material over the years, mixing a number of influences with a solid rock backbone. This, his 6th, is the first of a pair mostly recorded during the same sessions, the second being 50 Minutes Later which has a very similar feel. As the man himself says in his liner notes, much of the inspiration comes from his time spent in London in the late 60s when he first met up with the likes of David Gilmour and Robert Wyatt, both of whom play on this album. Also featured are his old Roxy colleagues Brian Eno, Andy MacKay and Paul Thompson, as well as Chrissy Hynde who adds harmonica and backing vocals to a couple of tracks.

The music here owes much to those psychedelic days, but overlain with modern techniques and sounds, and the sensibilities of someone older and, presumably, wiser. It is rich in texture and multi-layered, with repeated listening revealing some delicate nuances - always the hallmark of quality arrangements. While his singing voice is adequate but unspectacular, it is his guitar playing which is of most interest, and here he doesn't let us down, exhibiting inventiveness and energy with some excellent soloing. He is not a flashy player, nor is he egotistical - a sentiment born out by the amount of lead work undertaken by others - instead his guitar work is always complementary to the context of the song. Oh, and all the keyboards are also played by Phil!

Broken Dreams builds slowly from sound effects to a dreamy mid-tempo full-ensemble song with a multi-tracked guitar solo and some spacey treatments by Eno. Green Spikey Cactus, a bitter take on injustice ("Son of a bitch you damn darn potato-head I'm gonna swat like a big fat fly"), is a full-on rocker with treated vocals. The simpler love song Love Devotion has a more intimate soundscape of acoustic guitar and strings (Mellotronic?) which jogs along nicely with a memorable tune and an almost singalong chorus. Wish You Well, an ode to a late friend, is a simple song, with lots of acoustic guitars and an almost latin feel, though not particularly inspiring musically. Apart from a brief spoken passage, the title track 6PM is a more adventurous up-tempo instrumental, led by electric guitar and electric viola. Waiting For The Sun To Shine is another spacey mid-tempo song with some nice harmonies (presumably Phil with himself), an interesting arrangement, and some fine sax from Andy Mackay. A slightly jazzy texture is added by double bass and piano over an almost hip-hop type beat and repetitive percussion for the instrumental Manzra, where a variety of lead instruments fail to give the track any real substance.

The last 5 tracks form a mini-suite called The Cissbury Ring which Phil describes as a "psychedelic short story. The weaving of my visualisation of magic realism into a Hardy-esque / magical mystery tour of the South Downs in England with death (Shoreline), love (Always You) and final transcendence (Sacred Days)". The track Cissbury Hill is another good tune with a chugging accompaniment and multi-tracked electric guitar. Porlock is a short interlocking instrumental featuring Wyatt on trumpet, leading to the slightly weird Shoreline, an atmospheric arrangement with haunting vocals and oboe evoking a cold and lonely beach with gulls flying overhead and the tide coming in. Always You begins slowly with synth washes and a lone electric guitar, then a kick drum gives it some movement before Gilmour's guitar and Wyatt's trumpet add to the dynamics near the end. Starting encouragingly with some backwards guitar, the final track Sacred Days is an up-tempo psych work-out with an infectious repeated chorus ending with the duelling guitars of Manzanera and Gilmour.

This is an excellent album, full of progressive ideas, inventive arrangements, nice tunes and top class musicianship. It is also nicely presented in a tri-fold die-cut digipack complete with lyrics. Highly recommended.

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Send comments to Joolz (BETA) | Report this review (#77151) | Review Permalink
Posted Thursday, May 04, 2006

Review by tszirmay
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Crossover Team
4 stars Is Phil Manzanera incredible or what? The pioneering guitarist has a style that always searches out new tones and territories, so that when writing accessible material, the axe work would swoon in utter creativity. With such prog stalwarts as Robert Wyatt and David Gilmour as well as the inimitable Paul Thompson (arguably one of the greatest rock drummers ever), the incomparable Brian Eno and the suave Andy Mackay from the Roxy days, this recording also has Chrissie Hynde of the Pretenders on "fuzzy" harmonica and backing vocals. The disc is clearly a two chapter affair, the first being a series of rock tunes that singe the outer edges of progdom, with healthy doses of originality and amazing sounds. The languid lament of "Broken Dreams", the mesmerizing sing-along with an almost U2-ish feel "Green Spikey Cactus" featuring a torrid Mackay sax blast, the bluesy "Love Devotion", the laid-back and countrified "Wish You Well" (a wink to his previous "Listen Now" album and with a fluid Bill McCormick bass solo) and the rousing "6pm" that unpretentiously show off Phil's unique style both on rhythm and his unmistakable lead contortions. "Waiting For the Sun to Shine" sounds almost like an RPWL song, progressive pop that is just too strange to be commercially viable, with loads of "Enotonic" drenching some obtuse guitar atmospherics (just like in the good old Roxy days) and sealed with a gallant Mackay sax shine. "Manzra" is a terrific instrumental ode that has a gentle lilt, highly melancholic, conjuring images of "Primitive Guitar" days and an absolute treasure track. The second chapter is subtitled "The Cissbury Ring", a multi-part suite featuring the unmistakable trumpet and drums of the legendary Robert Wyatt, offering up some whimsical Brit prog with a slight Canterbury feel, where nostalgia, humor and first-class melancholia prevail. Two brief snippets: "Porlock" is more trumpet with Phil's shimmering sonics adding some atmosphere and "Shoreline" is introduced by a superb Andy Mackay oboe, enveloped in sheets of wind-blown synths . "Always You" is a drop dead gorgeous melody, leading into the apotheosis track "Sacred Days", where the rambunctious arrangement is firmly anchored by a typical whopping David Gilmour solo guitar. Manzanera has already a reputation as a class act (Roxy Music sort of laid that in stone) and frankly really doesn't need to be doing this but his legacy has always been about being undeniably progressive. Very few guitarists today can ever lay claim to that accolade. No wonder he has so many friends and so many fans. 4 amazonas.

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Send comments to tszirmay (BETA) | Report this review (#166478) | Review Permalink
Posted Saturday, April 12, 2008

Review by Slartibartfast
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars It's 6 PM, do you know where your Phil Manzanera is?

This is Phil's second excursion into lead vocals for a solo album, five years after Vozero, and he's definitely sharpened up his vocal skills and found his style. Phil had started out doing fairly progressive solo albums, but drifted off into more commercial material, but seems to be getting back to a more progressive area. Phil says in the liner notes he was kind of reconnecting with the '60's so the music has a dominant psychedelic atmosphere to it. Unless I missed it in the liner notes, Phil is not only the lead vocalist, but the lyric writer.

A nice array of musicians have come along for the ride on this one: Paul Thompson, Brian Eno, and Andy Mackay from Roxy Music; Chrissie Hynde from the Pretenders (you can always, uh pretend she's not here if you don't like that group); Robert Wyatt, from Soft Machine and Robert Wyatt; David Gilmour from that Pink band. Sorry if I've overlooked anyone else I know of or should have.

The opener Broken Dreams is a song about uhm, broken dreams. I'm not sure what the Enotonic is all about, but I think I like it.

Green Spikey Cactus. Should have had some commercial potential, but not in this and that day and age (2004). Hynde on backing vocals and harmonica. Mackay shows up for some sax action. Nice rocking little piece.

Love Devotion is a nice mellow sweet song about what, I don't know, might be a clue in the title. Phil takes on piano and keyboards in addition to guitar. You have to admire the multi talented musician. Andy M.'s oboe is a rather nice touch.

Wish You Well, sentimental, ethereal background vocals, I do believe it to be about someone departed, who is not apparent so it could apply to someone you might know. Phil's featured on acoustic, something you'd rarely hear with Roxy if at all.

6PM picks up the pace with some uncredited vocals in Espanol. Mostly instrumental, very rockin'.

Waiting For The Sun To Shine is a nice optimistic song. Phil decided to mess around some electronic drums rather than have an actual drummer. Still it's all cool. Andy sax and more Enotonic, whatever the hell that is.

The instrumental, Manza, wraps up what would have been an LP in the olden days and sets us up for what would be the second side. For all I know this album might have been released as such in a limited expensive edition, but I expect not.

The Cissbury Ring is basically a concept album side, five tracks meant to be taken in as a single unit.

Cissbury Ring is a nice intense instrumental that kicks off before Phil ads his singing. Very psychedelic and reminiscent of old times, Beatle-esque. Porlock is a nice short instrumetal interlude with Phil, Robert, and a double bassist by the name of Yarron Stavi, then the mood gets rather somber with Shoreline: "And as the sun sets, The sound of darkness, Is there evermore." Always You is about who I don't know, just another sweet song about you whoever you are. Gilmore gets in on the action for this one and hangs around to wrap up the album with Sacred Days. More homage to the late '60's. "Some things are meant to be."

One of those largely undiscovered gems that I think should appeal to many a prog fan.

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Send comments to Slartibartfast (BETA) | Report this review (#202732) | Review Permalink
Posted Saturday, February 14, 2009

Latest members reviews

4 stars The best so far! Why? Phil Manzanera cuts it short with the insisnting "Latin" flavor of most of his songs. This guy may not be a "natural" songwriter but in the proper atmosphere; he can work out some great songs; scarce; but great. In 6PM he manages to hold an entire album; without the aid of some ... (read more)

Report this review (#979713) | Posted by admireArt | Sunday, June 16, 2013 | Review Permanlink

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